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Old 12-11-2006, 12:17 PM   #1
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Default Recommended tire for my first track day?

I'm working hard getting ready for my first track day at VIR in June and now am looking for a set of tires for the event. Should I go for a full-on race compound or a high performance street tire? What does heat-cycling do? Why do I need shaved tires?

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Dan
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Old 12-11-2006, 12:28 PM   #2
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I can't recommend tires that are cheap because I haven't gotten into that. But shaved tires give improved traction because they remove tread that in turn increases surface area of the tread patten making the tire closer to being a full on racing "slick". The tread patterns for good race tires are designed to be shaved, or not shaved, I personally would not shave them unless I was rich and a sure I was gonna kick some *** that weekend. Unless your Falkens are bald you could run them, they're not a terrible tire from what people tell me and you atleast know they're traction limits.
If you want to just go all out go pick up some Toyo Proxes T1Rs, pretty sure that's one of the tires required in Spec Miata.
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Old 12-11-2006, 12:35 PM   #3
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Azenis get a bit greasy as they warm up, so you have to adjust you driving to them, otherwise for the price they are great. Khumo Ecsta MX are around the same price for equal performance. I'm been running the RT-215s for years and twice on the track, they work for me, at 195 and @ 170rwhp.

The best thing about street tires like the Azenis and MXs is that you'll hear when they are about to break free. And they are easy to correct. R-compounds usually break free without warning and require a lot more work to correct.

The cost of two Falkens or Khumos will cost the same as (1) R-compound. (v710, RA-1, R4S03r, etc.)
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Old 12-11-2006, 12:37 PM   #4
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For a first track day I'd recommend just a good set of high-performance summer only tires like the Falken Azenis, Hankook RS Z212, and the like. They will work just fine on the track unless it's a super hot summer day which should still be okay, but they may get a bit greasy towards the end of the day.

Full on shaved race tires are great, but they also have less "feedback" for the beginner so they stick like hell but don't give as much warning like street tires when they approach their limits.
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Old 12-11-2006, 12:47 PM   #5
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Plus, your doing an HPDE correct? just have fun, learn the track, learn the lines, learn the limits of the car, fix whatever you broke, and pass all the high powered in-experinced drivers and smile.
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Old 12-11-2006, 01:20 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by braineack View Post
Plus, your doing an HPDE correct? just have fun, learn the track, learn the lines, learn the limits of the car, fix whatever you broke, and pass all the high powered in-experinced drivers and smile.
HPDE? I'm sorry but I don't know what that stands for. May I get you to elaborate that please?

It's a whole weekend thing and I'll be sharing the car with my brother. Do you think a set of summers will last the whole weekend?
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Old 12-11-2006, 01:52 PM   #7
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For the price, you cant beat Azenis RT-615's.
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Old 12-11-2006, 02:23 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Virus View Post
HPDE? I'm sorry but I don't know what that stands for. May I get you to elaborate that please?

It's a whole weekend thing and I'll be sharing the car with my brother. Do you think a set of summers will last the whole weekend?

High Performance Drivers Education. Usually what motorheads do on the weekends who aren't competing. I'm local clubs have standard track days as well.

Surprisingly, I've found that the track is easier on the tires than a day of autoxing. You shouldn't be worried about tire wear.
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Old 12-12-2006, 03:02 AM   #9
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For your first track day, buy some inexpensive (but not cheap ***) tires and LEARN during that track day. I did on my first outing in my Mustang GT on old half worn Kelly Springfields and I didn't give a **** if they were toast after the day. It helped me learn a lot and now I'm able to run something softer and predict what the vehicle will do.
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Old 12-12-2006, 11:06 AM   #10
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the 615's take heat better than the old azenis. Not as sticky or grippy but if it is your first event you can decide how much you enjoy it. Later on when you decide what you want to do you can switch.

I autox on azenis with my old car (not alot though maybe 4 in 4~5 years i had the car). Now with the new car I bought I got 3 sets of wheels. Streets with AVS ES 100, a set of falken 615's, and some V710s. On this new car I went out the first time on the 615's and would have learned on them but eveyrone suggested that I take the V710's so that they would not harden from sitting in the garage. The grip is 1000x better and I am amazed the speed's the car can hold in turns, although I know my lack of driving expereince is holding me back from how fast the tires will allow me to run.

So I guess that was just a bunch of story with no answer to your comment but I guess If you know you want to do this seriously I say go ahead and spend on a nicer tire because even if you learn on street tires you will have to re-learn when you get an R-comp. I say look into the Toyo RA-1. That is the spec miata tire. I think kuhmo still makes the victoracer model too (although I am not sure if they have stopped), and the MX also depending on what size you have.
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Old 12-12-2006, 11:13 AM   #11
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To me it's a $$$ issue. I might track the car 2-3 times next year and run maybe 5-10 autoxes. I will get 3-4 years of use from a new set of RT-615s for half the cost, where the Rs will be dead after the season. I don't compete so it doesn't really matter to me if I'm not getting the full potential, plus if you can learn to drive fast on street tires, then the skys the limit on sticky tires.

It's really a matter to what you want to spend. R compounds are really fun and a must have if your competing in any way.
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Old 12-12-2006, 11:19 AM   #12
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Toyo RA-1


Victorracer V700
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Old 12-12-2006, 12:39 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pitlab77 View Post
Toyo RA-1

Victorracer V700
If this is your first event... and not your first of the year after many seasons of track days... DO NOT run R compounds.

They will not talk to you like a street tire can, you will not learn what you would on a regular tire. You will risk loosing control of the car without warning... You'll spend alot more money.

DO NOT RUN R COMPS.

Please... just don't.

If you want a nice street tire and "track" tire run the Azenis 615s. As others have stated... great tire and awesome bang for the buck. Check out www.vulcantire.com and www.edgeracing.com for good pricing too. Both are reputable tire dealers.
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Old 12-12-2006, 12:50 PM   #14
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I guess the question is is this your first driving event ever? Or the first time on a roadcourse?
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Old 12-12-2006, 12:58 PM   #15
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+1 on the RA-1. I will bet that these will last longer than most Max performance summer tires (Azenis, RS2, T1-S/R)

The RA-1 can take a **** load of heat before it falls off, it is very progressive when it does let go.

I think if the budget allows you should run the proper tire for the task at hand. I've run Azenis and RA-1, there isn't a lot of difference here except that the RA-1 will last longer and grip better when doing track duty. The Azenis will get greasy as they over heat (quickly), and you'll likely still have tread left when they heat cycle out. I corded my RA-1 (finally) and they still seemed to have decent grip in them, maybe not as good as new but certainly better than the Azenis I pulled off the car at 4/32.

Jay
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Old 12-12-2006, 01:08 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pitlab77 View Post
I guess the question is is this your first driving event ever? Or the first time on a roadcourse?
First time on a road course. Decisions, decisions. Is there a compromise?
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Old 12-12-2006, 01:09 PM   #17
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What is on the car now? First time at the track might be better with what you are used to.
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Old 12-12-2006, 01:10 PM   #18
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I think the RA-1s would fit nicely. I feel agree with what jay said about them
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Old 12-12-2006, 01:19 PM   #19
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People shouldn't move to R compounds until they have numerous track events under their belt. It destroys the learning curve. Hides mistakes and causes more drastic ones.

Just my opinion and those of alot of other track people I play with.
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Old 12-12-2006, 01:32 PM   #20
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I just don't agree. Learn on the tool you intend to use. When you are first learning you shouldn't be chasing 10/10ths anyway, so you SHOULDN'T be pushing your tires. I think given the environment a proper tracktire (RA-1) is the safest choice. I wouldn't recommend and Hoosier A6 or a V710 for economic reasons, they just can't stand up to the heat.

Agree to disagree I guess.
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